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Preparing our next Generation of Healthcare Heroes


We are counting on your support in maintaining the following programs this year


The Urban Bridges Medical Mentoring Program is our flagship program. It is a three-tiered program, open to high school, undergraduate, college graduates and postbaccalaureate students, designed to expose underrepresented, inner city youth interested in becoming a physician to careers in medicine. The key components of this program consist of the Saturday Morning Professor Lecture Series, a monthly seminar taught by Chicago’s Top Docs that teaches students “the language of medicine” by exposing students to a wide range of medical knowledge through clinical cases.  The second component is One-on-One Physician Mentoring, where students are partnered one to one with a physician mentor who will guide them on their journey to medicine.  Most of our students are also partnered with an area medical student who are just a few steps ahead of our mentees and are therefore very familiar with the journey ahead.  The final critical component is what we call Affirmative Academic Advising. Our affirmational approach seeks to  provide students with the support, encouragement, and additional resources needed to give their vision wings. The Urban Bridges Medical Mentoring Program will give our talented students the competitive edge needed to be a successful medical school applicant and matriculant.  

Due to the generosity of our sponsors, we are able to offer this program to students at no charge. However, as our program expands and the number of mentees increases, so do the associated costs. The UBMM Program is launching a mentoring app for smooth communication between mentees and mentors as well as to send updates and reminders to our students. This app is costly, but necessary for all of the great work we do. Audiovisual support for UBMM sessions is also necessary as our meetings are now recorded due to COVID-19 restrictions.  Technical equipment and technology to simulate our student experiences and support their learning are also costly.  Annually, the Urban Bridges program supports more than 100 Students each year. 


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Academic STEM Center

It is important to note that the road to becoming a great physician starts with being a great student.  There are no substitutes for that. While we inspire, encourage and believe in each of our students, we also fully understand that “faith without works is dead.” We therefore have an Academic STEM Center that is devoted to providing the resources that our students need from Organic Chemistry tutoring to upper-level biology.  Students have access to at least 10 hours of high quality tutoring each month. With your support, we provide the kinds of services that will help close the academic stem gap for our students. 

I Am Abel Foundation assembled an amazing committee of physicians, medical students, and pre-med students to draft a comprehensive approach to developing underrepresented, minority students from vulnerable populations. Consisting of four tiers: a 10-week summer clinical experience at Jesse Brown VA, a 10-week MCAT developmental Program, a 10-week MCAT intensive program, and an 8-10 week summer research experience offered at various universities in Chicago, CSIDPAR is a collection of summer programs designed especially for the advancement of our mentees in the areas of clinical medicine, health equity, and research. We are excited to introduce this brand new programming in 2021!

Chicago Summer Institute for the Development of Physicians and Researchers (CSIDPAR)

Chicago Summer Institute for the Develop

MCAT Developmental Preparatory Program

One of the determining factors for medical school admission is the MCAT. I Am Abel Foundation recognizes the need for MCAT prep in our community, and as a result, the MCAT Development Prep Program was born! This program is designed to prepare students for the MCAT through improving study skills, question-based learning, as well as content review. Each student will need their own set of study materials including access to question banks, content review books, online video resources and in person instruction. The MCAT Development Program is a 2-summer program, focusing on Biology and General chemistry the first year and Physicians and Organic chemistry and biology the second year, with a continuous focus on Critical Analysis and Reasoning year-round. 

For the past 4 years, our students have been trained as Red Cross certified Instructors of CPR and First Aid.  We have added STOP THE BLEED to empower our students to teach their peers how to save a life in the setting of trauma that is all to familiar in the communities from which our students come.  Our students have become ambassadors of nonviolence and not only carry the message of nonviolence to youth at elementary and high schools, community centers and churches FREE OF CHARGE but they also teach their peers CPR, First Aid and now, STOP THE BLEED.  To train our students, purchase supplies and to teach and certify students throughout the city incurs a significant cost.  It is our goal to train 10 additional student instructors, half of which will be bilingual, and to expand our outreach so that students, as part of their service commitment are teaching classes at least twice monthly in the communities from which they come. 


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Academic Advising

In order for our students to become physicians, they must first be great students. Our academic advising is affirmational, supporting each student on their journey to medicine through a tailored approach. Students have heard plenty of people tell them what’s not possible.  We won’t do that.  We will work with our students to identify their unique needs or barriers and develop a plan that makes sense for them.  After attending an Academic Advising Boot Camp, students will have the opportunity to meet one-on-one with a physician or medical student advisor who will evaluate their academic standing and provide them with feedback on what steps to take next.  Each student will have two academic advising sessions annually but can meet more often if needed. 

While Academic Advising is of no charge to the student, it does have associated costs for certain vital components of the program, including hiring academic advisors and providing scholarships to our students that may need additional programs as post-baccalaureate students. 




 Most of our student mentees graduating high school are struggling to afford college.  While we have been very successful in helping several of our students receive full scholarships, still others are not as fortunate though equally deserving.  It is our goal to offer academic and needs back scholarships annually to two deserving students enrolling in college.  We also wish to offer scholarship support for our post-bacc students who are enrolled in programs where there is no financial aid option.  With the exorbitant costs of pre-med applications as well as interview costs we are hoping to support our students in this area as well.

In their own words...

Testimonies from our scholars and their time with the foundation

“…She built me up to the point that I was actually confident enough to apply.  In the end, all of the schools I applied to, I was accepted into.  I actually would have never thought that was possible without her help.”

Today she is Captain Valynn Antoine

- An emergency medicine resident in Georgia

“My mentor always provided a listening ear and sound advice. The older I get, I find that genuine mentorship is difficult to come by. She is truly a gem...for the I Am Abel Foundation.”

Miatta Williams

Medical Student at

St. George University

“I sought a mentor who looked like me and could relate to me.  My mentor met me at my lowest possible point along my journey when had all but given up and no longer thought it would be possible for me  to become a physician.  But with her encouragement along with other mentors and my village, I am now graduating from Rosalind Franklin Medical School in May and hope to match in Surgery.”

Temi Ojo 

Resident at Northwestern University in Family Medicine

“I can’t thank the foundation enough. My mentor is truly amazing and is more like a second mother to me. She and my writing and interviewing coach really boosted my confidence and made sure I was prepared for my scholarship interviews and essays. I feel so blessed to have them as my support system and to have them rooting for me.  Its extremely comforting and I’m beyond grateful.  Dr. Conway’s number one message that I promise to fulfill as a doctor is that I will always remember to “leave a wedge in a door for others to follow.”

Diana Guzman

Undergraduate Student at

Oberlin College


Whatever your reason for donating and however you choose to make your donation, we are grateful for your support! 


Our community partners have donated gifts or given financial or structural support valued from $1,000 - $10,000 and more.


Please help us celebrate our cherished sponsors 

Rush University Medical Center

Loyola Stritch Medical Center

Blue Cross Blue Shield Illinois

Ross University

Midwestern University

Loretto Hospital

Northwestern Medicine

Digestive Health Foundation

Gift Of Hope

Saul Weiner, MD

David Ansell, MD

Noosh Salvador, MD

Midwest Legacy Group

United Methodist Foundation

M. R. Bauer Foundation

I Am Abel Foundation employs several key principles. Our participants must recognize that because we are “Able” – we are capable of amazing success and must accept nothing less. Because we are “Abel,” we are also our brother’s keeper and are each personally responsible for the success of our brother.

Our programs will be implemented not only through vertical mentoring with the help of our partners with a wide range of expertise across the business, science, education and health sectors, but also through promotion of a concept we call “chain mentoring,” whereby each student is personally responsible for the mentoring of a fellow peer as well. 

Our belief is that once your life has been positively affected by the life of another, you must pass it on. Therefore, our program will focus on personal and leadership development and a commitment to volunteerism amongst our mentees.

Saturday Morning Professor. Learn more a

As a recognized 501c3 non-profit organization, your donations are fully tax deductible.  These donations will fund our programs which meet over 40 weekends annually and include many additional experiences including academic advising, medical missions, volunteering opportunities, studies abroad, College Corner (ACT Prep, Personal statement writing, mock interviewing, personalized tutoring), MedSchool University Prep and much more.

The mission of I Am Abel Foundation is not only medicine and research but humanitarian service. Pictured here are our mentees and parents volunteering and packing food for hungry children across the world.

Please click our “Donate Here” button that will link to your secure paypal account and make your tax-deductible donation to the 

I Am Abel Foundation today!


I Am Abel Foundation is a 501 (c)(3) non-profit organization.

Your donation today is a fully- tax-deduction contribution.

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